Streaking veteran Fernando Gonzalez has a tough test ahead of him in former DREAM welterweight champion Marius Zaromskis, but it's nothing he hasn't faced before.
"The Menifee Maniac" recently scored two huge back-to-back upset wins, knocking off "Psycho" Karl Amoussou and "The Heat" Karo Parisyan in short order. At Bellator 132 on Jan. 16, 2015 in Temecula, Calif., he'll look to make it three in a row against the "Whitemare."
In speaking to MMAmania.com, Gonzalez noted that he's got a bit of a hometown advantage.
"I think they like me here just because we bring in a big crowd. Virgil Zwicker (is) also one of my teammates. We started pretty much around the same time at (Team) Quest. We bring in a pretty good amount of people to come watch us fight. It makes for a good atmosphere and it gets me pumped up. I like being able to put on a show for my fans and my family."
Gonzalez says he's well prepared to deliver a show, having put in a full training camp and studied Zaromskis carefully, while taking nothing for granted about their fight.
"I try to watch some of the film just to kind of see the angles that he takes and just his style -- what's some of the things that I can capitalize on. He might learn something the week of the fight and he pulls it off that fight -- you never know. I just get a little blueprint of what I want to do and how his movement is, and just try to look for that while we're fighting. If he makes those little mistakes, I try to capitalize on that as we're going."
The only thing that might stop Gonzalez IS Gonzalez, as he had a drug test failure for THC following Bellator 127. Fortunately for him, the California State Athletic Commission levied a fine without overturning the result.
"I got chewed out pretty bad on it. Everybody's got their own opinion on the matter, but I can't do it for the sport, before my fights and stuff. My fighting is more important to me than that. I have a little bit tougher time sleeping and stuff, but it is what it is and my fight's more important. I gotta do what I have to (do) to compete."
And compete he will -- right in his own backyard -- 15 minutes from Menifee. Complete audio of our interview with Fernando Gonzalez is below, and compete coverage of Bellator 132 will be at MMAmania.com all week long. The Bellator 132 main event on Spike TV is Fabricio "Pitbull" Freire vs. Daniel Straus.